California Precision Sports (CPS) and De La Salle Lipa emerged as champions in the 2023 PNVF Under-18 girls’ and boys’ championships, respectively, on Sunday at Rizal Memorial Coliseum.
CPS won the girls’ title by defeating Grace Christian College Foundation (GCC) 25-14, 25-16, 25-18. The team from Antipolo went undefeated in seven matches and did not lose a set during their title run.
Meanwhile, De La Salle Lipa had to battle it out in a fourth set against Santa Rosa City, eventually securing a 23-25, 25-20, 25-13, 25-15 victory.
Jenalyn Umayam and Casiey Monique Dongallo were instrumental in CPS’s win, with 18 and 15 hits, respectively.
Kizzie Madriaga was named Best Setter for her performance in providing stability for the team.
“She [Madriaga] is the quarterback of our team, she knows where to give the ball,” head coach Obet Vital said. “She delivers and scores well. Definitely, she did an outstanding job whoever was in the floor with her, she’s a playmaker.”
The CPS girls won the crown undefeated in seven matches beginning from the pool play. They also didn’t give up a set in their title run.
In the boys’ category, De La Salle Lipa’s team captain, Kris Gabriel Hernandez, led the team with 22 points on 18 hits, two blocks, and two service aces. Hernandez was named MVP and Best Outside Hitter.
“It proves that volleyball is very much alive in the grassroots and the way these boys and girls played, Philippine volleyball has a big mass base for future members of the national team,” said PNVF president Tats Suzara, who also congratulated technical director Yul Benosa and competition director Oliver Mora for successfully organizing the tournament.
Suzara awarded the medals and trophies to the podium winners along with Philippine Sports Commission Commissioner Olivia “Bong” Coo and PNVF vice president Ricky Palou, secretary-general Donaldo Caringal, board member Karl Jeffrey Chan , Benosa and Chris Gopez, founder and coach of Fil-Am Nation Select, a worldwide platform for Filipino athletes.
A total of 36 teams participated in the tournament, which was supported by the Philippine Olympic Committee, Philippine Sports Commission, PLDT, Rebisco, and Akari.
The individual awardees for the girls’ category were Rianne Margaret Bedural as Best Middle Blocker, Lavhinia Jean Sasondoncillo as Best Libero, and Sherrie Acosta as Best Opposite Hitter, all from GCC.
Shane Andrei Dimaano and Raizah Nicole Mamailao of De La Salle Lipa were named Second Best Outside Hitter and Second Best Middle Blocker, respectively.
In the boys’ category, Neil Aldrin Catap of Justice CM Palma High School was Second Best Hitter, Curt Jan Guillermo of Santa Rosa City was First Middle Blocker, Clark Dingle of Santa Rosa City was Best Setter, Jury Cureg of Mayamot National High School-Antipolo City was Second Best Middle Blocker, and Jeremi Pierre Cuenca and Patrick Jade Reyes of De La Salle Lipa were Best Libero and Best Opposite Hitter, respectively.